Joint with Stephen Jones MP, Shadow Minister for Regional Communications.
Last night, we found out what Malcolm Turnbull’s second-rate NBN really means for regional Australians.
Before a Joint Standing Committee into the National Broadband Network, NBNCo admitted it plans to slug regional Australians on the fixed-wireless network $20 more per month than a customer who is lives in the city on the same speed.
Brian Mitchell MP: I want to confirm what you were saying to Mr Jones - Mr Rue, Mr Ryan, I represent a country electorate where a lot of my people are on Fixed Wireless. I want to be crystal clear, are you saying that if somebody lives in the centre of Hobart and they are on a 50 [Mbps] bundled service, they are paying $45 wholesale and they move out to my electorate and get a fixed wireless tower on the new bundled service you’re talking about, they’ll be paying $65 wholesale? Is that in essence what you’re saying?
Mr Stephen Rue, NBNCo: If the retail provider chooses to purchase a bundled 50/20 product from us, that will be $65 yes.
This is an extra $20 per month regional consumers will have to fork out.
Simply put, a regional customer could pay 44% more than someone in the city for the same 50 Mbps speed under this plan.
Further, recent data released by the ACCC indicates 9 in 10 regional households on the fixed-wireless network would be slugged by this charge if they sought to order a 50 Mbps plan.
“This is a very troubling development. The NBN was supposed to bridge the digital divide – not create a new one,” Ms Rowland said.
“Because of his failures, the Prime Minister now wants regional Australians to pay $20 more per month than he would have to pay in Point Piper for the same service. It’s just not fair,” Mr Jones said.
Under Turnbull, we have a second-rate NBN that is $20 billion over budget and four years behind schedule.
It’s no wonder Australians are being lumped with higher prices, slower speeds and less reliable service.